Seagalography


Steven Seagal at two days old.

The story of Steven Seagal is a long and interesting one. On a chilly morning on April 10th of 1951 he was born in his parents living room in Lancing Michigan. This was because he actually attempted to karate chop his way out of his mother's womb, disabling her. He was delivered a few hours later by the local doctor, a healthy boy weighing eight pounds even. Unfortunately his mother was not so luck. She sustained a severe spinal cord injury from the ordeal and was never able to walk again.

Seagal's early years were spent learning martial arts. He began training at the early age of seven under a martial arts master by the name of Fumio Demura, who nobody has ever heard of. By the time Seagal was fifteen he had already mastered martial arts and successfully killed Demura in revenge for Demura killing Seagal's pet hamster, Kenji.


Steven Seagal at age ten with his trainer, Fumio Demura.

After that, Seagal decided to move out of Lancing. He moved to Los Angeles and got a job training celebrities in the Japanese martial art of akido. His clients included Sean Connery, George Burns and Walter Matheau. In fact, while teaching Connery martial arts for the James Bond film Never Say Never Again, Seagal accidently broke Connery's wrist when Connery cracked a joke about Seagal's mother. His training classes gained Seagal recognition and he was noticed by an agent named Michael Ovitz.

Ovitz saw potential in Seagal. The man could break almost anyone's wrist, and he was damned good at taking out large groups of people by barely moving. Ovitz saw that this would draw in movie-goers who had made the blatant action films of the 1980s popular. The main problem was that Steven Seagal was a terrible, terrible actor. But as we all know, nobody cared about talent in the 80s. As long as you killed a shitload of people in your movie then the seats would fill. So Seagal made his debut in the 1988 film Above the Law.

After the rampant success of Above the Law, Seagal took his generous payout from the movie and quit Hollywood and moved to Japan. Convinced he was the greatest martial artist in the history of the universe, he became the first American to open a dojo in Japan. However, Seagal could not speak Japanese, so he did not get a single customer.

After two years all the money from Above the Law was gone, and Seagal was in financial trouble. Desperate, he called up Ovitz once again to see if his acting career hadn't been forgotten in the last two years. Ovitz was willing to take Seagal back, and Seagal appeared in Hard to Kill and Marked for Death in 1990. Both movies were filmed the week he got back from Japan.


This scene where Seagal saves San Francisco from EPA helicopters by throwing rocks at them was cut because it made no sense.

After this followed a multitude more movies. As Seagal's box office draw became larger, he acquired more control over the scripts. In 1994's On Deadly Ground, the plot was changed slightly based on Seagal's input. Originally the main character was to stop a group of terrorists from bombing the Alaskan pipeline and holding America's oil supply hostage. However, Seagal changed it so that the main character was an EPA agent who had to stop an evil oil company from polluting Alaska. Also he was helped by magic Indian guys. Needless to say only four people saw the movie and Warner Bros. refused to allow Seagal creative control over his films for years to come.

As damage control, Seagal starred in Under Siege 2: 2 Under 2 Siege in 1995, the sequel to the immensely popular Under Siege. The studio took a chance and used the exact same script from Under Siege, except the budget was lower so it took place on a train instead of a battleship. An interesting bit of trivia about Under Siege 2 is that the cast and crew bought train tickets for a trip from San Diego to Los Angeles. They filmed and edited the entire movie during the trip and handed it into Warner Bros. when they arrived at the studio in LA. This gamble paid off, and Under Siege 2 became the highest grossing film in history.


Steven Seagal with his 1996 Academy Award for best supporting actor.

In 1996 Seagal starred in what is perhaps his greatest role in Executive Decision. In it he plays Army lieutenant Austin Travis who is courageously sucked out of an airplane at 35,000 feet when he accidently opened the wrong door to go to the bathroom. Seagal's brief but poignant performance earned him his first Academy Award for best supporting actor.

Seagal starred in a variety of hugely successful films until what may be the defining moment of his career. In 2001 he starred in the thriller Ticker. In Ticker he played an Arabic man who worked on the bomb squad of the New York police department. In one scene in the movie Seagal's character must disarm a bomb in the World Trade Center. However, Seagal's character is suddenly overrun by drug dealers. He fights for his life and kills eighty-seven drug dealers without getting touched. However, the bomb timer expires and the buildings blow up.

The movie was a success, however it opened the weekend prior to 9/11/01. When the World Trade Center tragedy occurred a week later, the movie was pulled from theaters and the masters were burned. This had nothing to do with that fact that it was a shitty movie. Seagal was crushed that his character was not able to save the day, and that nobody liked his movie.

The next three years saw Seagal taking parts in low-budget action films where he would simply show up for one day of work, have the crew take pictures of his face from a variety of angles, and they would paste these images onto a body double. You'll notice in particular with Out for a Kill that whenever Seagal's character speaks his mouth is always obscured in shadows. Also he appears to have a distinct Mexican accent, which the real Steven Seagal lacks. This is due to the cheap voice actor they got to read all of Seagal's lines.

However in 2005 Steven Seagal returned to his former glory with the smash-hit Into the Sun, which was a straight-to-DVD release. Seventeen people purchased the movie, making it the most successful straight-to-DVD film in the history of cinema.

Seagal prefers to quietly remain in his Santa Inez home where he teaches blind children how to harvest the various ingredients needed for his energy drink. He also likes to crush the skulls of his enemies, including evil oil tycoons, drug dealers, terrorists and obnoxious webmasters.